Asthma is identified as a chronic inflammation of the airways resulting in wheezing, tightness of the chest, coughing & difficulty breathing.
Experiencing an asthmatic episode can be frightening and individual’s often fail to understand how to prevent these episodes. A common trigger of an asthmatic episode is physical activity and individuals will begin to exclude the hobbies they love such as team sports and gym workouts from their daily regime. Studies reveal exercise is an exceptional (and free) method to alleviate the signs/symptoms of asthma and increase VO2max when training effectively. Find out how!
Use the below tips to alleviate the signs/symptoms of asthma and regain confidence in exercise.
- Avoid training in cold, dry and high-pollutant environments. These types of environments are considered triggers of asthmatic episodes.
- A warm up is CRITICAL: 15 minutes of aerobic exercise is proven to decrease the frequency of asthmatic symptoms during exercise. Warming up encourages a “refractory period” (a symptom-free period post warm up) allowing the individual to exercise without restriction
- Commence with a low-intensity workout and progressively increase as workouts become easier to complete
- Breathing through a mask or scarf encourages inhalation of pre-warmed and humidified air decreasing the likelihood of asthmatic episodes
Studies have proven that participation in regular physical activity will increase aerobic fitness and creates ease in completing everyday tasks symptom-free. Partaking in physical activity strengthens respiratory muscles which increases the ability to complete exercise at a higher intensity without limitations. The likelihood of breathlessness will decline, and quality of life rises.
Contact Absolute Balance for a personalised program tailored to your needs and abilities to ensure maximal benefit and management of your asthma. If David Beckham can win league titles with asthma, why can’t you?
Danica Falcone – B.Sc. Exercise, Sports and Rehabilitation
Exercise Scientist (AES)(ESSAM)
Turner, S. (2009). Burden of disease and benefits of exercise in fixed airway obstruction asthma.
Aggarwal, B., Mulgirigama, A., & Berend, N. (2018). Exercise-induced bronchoconstriction: prevalence, pathophysiology, patient impact, diagnosis and management. Npj Primary Care Respiratory Medicine, 28(1). doi: 10.1038/s41533-018-0098-2
MacAuley, D. & Best, T. (2007). Evidence-Based Sports Medicine. Massachusetts, BMJ Books.